Category Action , Sci-Fi , Thriller
Year: 2002
Time: 106 minutes
Production: Touchstone Pictures
Director: M. Night Shyamalan
Mel Gibson, Joaquin Phoenix, Rory Culkin, Abigail Breslin
MPAA PG-13 / UK12A
Our Rating 10/10 - Classic, 5star movie
Watchability 9/10 - doesn't disappoint
Contributed by Jordan Taylor
Tag-line It's Not Like They Didn't Warn Us.

Graham Hess (Mel Gibson) was a priest until he lost his faith one night when a driver (Shyamalan) fell asleep at the wheel and killed his wife, leaving him to raise their children alone with his brother Merrill (Joaquin Phoenix). Unexpectedly one day, mysterious crop-circles have appeared in their fields - and suddenly the news is reporting sightings of UFOs all across the world...

So, how does it end?

Graham receives a call from Ray (Shyamalan) and drops by his house. Ray apologizes for what happened to his wife, he also tells Graham that he has heard the aliens don't like water - and he has trapped one in his house's pantry.  Graham enters the house to investigate - and as the alien attacks under the pantry door Graham slices off 'his' fingers with a knife.
  Returning to the farmhouse, the news is predicting an attack within the next few hours - and that UFOs are presend within one mile of crop circles. The family decide to stay and board up the house.  After making their last meal together, they argue, but unsaid things are soon resolved - until they hear intruders in the loft.
  They escape to the dusty basement but in the panic Morganm suffers an asthma attack. With Graham's help they make it through to the morning - and open the door cautiously to exit. The house has been broken into, but without too much damage. They turn on the tv and little Bo tells them that people are dancing all over the world.
  Suddenly she drops her glass - and in the reflection of the tv we see that an alien has picked up Morgan and is threatening to harm the boy. (Some argue he is trying to cure him - but it's pretty obvious that this is a mean alien - missing a few fingers)

Graham has a final flashback to the final moments of his wife's crash where she says: "to tell Merrill to swing away!".  Graham looks around the room and spies Merrill's prized bat on the wall.  "Swing away Merrill!"  Merrill looks confused, as normal.  "Merrill! ... Swing away!"

The alien sprays a gas substance into Morgan's face.

Merill picks up the bat and works a number on the alien so that he drops Morgan. In the batting practice he also notices the alien has a dislike for water. In a final home run, the alien falls back and a number of Bo's discarded water glasses fall onto his head. The alien stops breathing.

Outside, Graham is crying in relief - the asthma had blocked Morgan's airways so that the poisonous gas couldn't get to his lungs. With a shot, Morgan is brought back around again.

At the end, it is a few seasons into the future, and Graham is getting ready for church, faith restored.


Amazing movie. Hitchcock-esque use of one main set to focus all the dramatic tension. Exact opposite of Independence Day - no big budget, inside-out movie. We don't care what the President of the United states thinks about the invasion! We only need to know how it affects us - those who aren't exceptional fighter pilots, mathematical geniuses with close ties to the White House or 'Tally Ho' ex-pats serving in the Saudi deserts waiting for "the Americans" to come up with a plan! [ ... see reviews.]

5.00/10 ( 2 Votes )
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